When the cat changes teeth, the milk teeth are replaced by permanent teeth. A closer look is important to discover problems with the teeth.
A cat’s milk teeth are small, pointed, and ideal for the first time in the little ball of fur’s life to get the first bites. But as the cat gets older, the little teeth are no longer enough.
When cats change teeth, milk teeth are replaced with permanent ones. This often happens without any problems. However, you should keep an eye on the change of teeth so that the vet can intervene if there are problems.
Here you can find out how cats change their teeth, what is important, and what symptoms you should look out for.
Three phases in the cat’s change of teeth
There are three important stages in the development of the dental apparatus in cats. The first two phases fall in the early months of the kittens. Within a few months, the jaw and teeth change significantly.
- Cats are born without teeth, so the mother cat can suckle her little ones without getting hurt. However, the milk teeth are already established.
- In the third week of life at the latest, the milk teeth slowly break out. First, the incisors and fangs show up in the cats. The molars follow around seven days later. By eight weeks, the kitten will usually have their full set of primary teeth. Now it can be switched to solid cat food.
- In the third stage of tooth development, the permanent teeth erupt. This already happens at a young cat age of four to six months. Then the milk teeth give way to adult teeth with larger and stronger teeth.
How do changing teeth change a cat’s appearance?
The fact that the milk teeth had to give way to the permanent teeth can even be seen from the shape of the cat’s head. This is not the least due to the fact that adult cats have more teeth than milk teeth. Gradually, as the animal grows, its proportions change: the initially very round head shape becomes more expressive. Overall, the cats just look more grown-up.
How long does it take for a cat to change teeth?
How long it takes your cat to change teeth depends on the breed. Cat milk teeth do not fall out at the same time. The process usually takes a few weeks. The young cat finished changing its teeth when it is about seven months old.
How does the change of teeth work in cats?
A kitten has 26 milk teeth. The dentition of adult cats later shows 30 teeth. He has four back molars.
The change of teeth in cats is activated by an organic process. The cat’s body dissolves the root of the milk teeth. The small transitional teeth become wobbly and are ultimately pushed out by the adult teeth that are pushed forward.
Many a cat owner finds a small milk tooth of his young cat and keeps it as a souvenir. However, the cat often swallows the milk teeth unnoticed, so that the pet owner does not notice much of the change of teeth.
Problems with changing teeth: What are persistent milk teeth?
As a rule, the change of teeth in the cat proceeds without any difficulties. Partially, however, the process has an impact on the young kitten and its behavior. In rare cases, a trip to the vet is necessary.
The expert should be consulted whenever a milk tooth does not fall out naturally. It then hinders the growth of adult teeth and provokes misaligned teeth. This is referred to as persistent milk teeth.
Persisting milk teeth can lead to double teeth, which can be particularly noticeable in cats on the fangs. In such a case, the veterinarian pulls the milk tooth to solve the problem.
Problems changing teeth: A permanent tooth is missing
If a permanent tooth does not form in the dentition, this can have two main reasons:
- The root of the deciduous tooth was not regressed. Now the milk tooth blocks the permanent tooth of the adult teeth. Then the vet pulls out the milk tooth.
- Due to genetic conditions, there is no adult tooth waiting under the milk tooth that wants to break through. An x-ray can be used to clarify which case applies to the cat. If there is no permanent tooth waiting, the doctor will not pull the milk tooth.
Fever when the cat changes teeth
Some kittens get a fever during the change of teeth. You feel weak and listless than before.
There is usually no major problem behind it. However, to ensure that this is only due to the change of teeth, a check-up visit to the veterinarian is advisable.
Tips: How to recognize the change of teeth in your cat
It is not always immediately obvious that your little fur ball is teething. However, these symptoms indicate that:
- The cat shows increased salivation.
- The cat often tilts its head and licks its gums with its tongue.
- Some kittens frequently rub their mouths on objects or their caregivers. In this way, the young cat wants to familiarize itself with the unusual feeling in the teeth.
- The cat eats more slowly.
- The cat is moodier.
- An unpleasant bad breath develops. It comes from the “dying off” of the milk teeth.
Pay attention to these symptoms so that you can give your little one the best possible support when changing teeth.
Tip: If your cat still has bad breath after changing teeth, these tips for cat dental care will help you.
How can you make it easier for the cat to change teeth?
Even with baby cats, you can make a contribution to dental health. These tips help to make it easier for cats to change teeth and thus lay the foundation for healthy teeth.
- Antiseptic treats
You can treat inflammation due to the change of teeth e.g. B. by giving the kitten treats with an antiseptic effect. This relieves irritation of the gums and small infections when the milk teeth give way to the permanent teeth.
- The right food
To make chewing easier, the cat should also be given soft food that it can eat and digest well. However, it can also be a bit of dry food to loosen loose milk teeth.
- teething toys
There are also teething toys on the market that can have a similar effect to dry food.
- Gum massage
If the animal trusts the owner, massages on the gums are also an option. In this way, the status of the change of teeth can also be assessed.
Basically, it is advisable to get the cat used to touching its mouth at an early stage. On the one hand, this makes later checks and treatments of the teeth at the vet easier. And on the other hand, you can easily take care of the dental health of the house tiger throughout its life. However, we cannot promise that your cat will one day be as enthusiastic about the toothbrush as the cat in this video.
Daily brushing of teeth with special products from the pet trade ensures that adult teeth remain healthy.
Tooth loss in cats of the elderly
Similar to us humans, there is also an age-related tooth loss in cats. Teeth can fall out even from a healthy set of teeth. This is often not a problem for the animal, since it comes to terms with it.
Sometimes, however, diseases are behind the loss of teeth. Mouth and throat problems and tartar can cause tooth loss. Regular prophylaxis and good dental care are therefore all the more important. Your veterinarian will be of great help in this regard.
We wish you and your darling a nice time together!